Are You Waiting For Perfect?

A man in boots sits on a ledge in front of plate glass windows
Brooke Cagel – Unsplash

There have been many changes in my life recently, great ones. They’ve kept me busy.

A new home. A new town, a promotion to a dream job, and a new child. Amazing provisions for which I am unequivocally grateful.

Through it all, I waited. For the perfect post to begin my blog again. I searched for the perfect subject line, moving content, the best beginning, but I wrote nothing at all.

An email hit my inbox a few weeks ago from illustrator/writer Jessica Abel author of Growing Gills and my personal favorite Out on the Wire (which has an amazing podcast by the way). The title went like this – If you are waiting for conditions to be perfect, you’ll die waiting.

Distractions, both good and bad, are everywhere.

She said this in her email:

And it’s easy to look at all those things (any distraction in life) and despair, to think there’s no way you’ll ever get a handle on it all. You might be right. But here’s the big secret to having a sustainable creative life.

YOU DON’T HAVE TO.

You can CHOOSE your work even if everything else in your life isn’t dialed in.

You have a right and a responsibility to your creative work.

We’re imperfect people with imperfect schedules. Why would I think shaking the rust off would mean anything more than an okay post with mediocre passion for it?

It’s time now to move. For action.

I truly hoped to start blogging again with something amazing, but this is what you get. A resolve to not wait and a commitment to write. Also, an admission that I let the beast of perfection win for a while.

But no more.

In what area of your life are you waiting for perfect?

 

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How to Eradicate the Fear of Failure Once and For All

Have you ever planned a wedding or party or event and had something go array? It was a huge deal at the time. You still think about it and shudder.

But you know who noticed it?

Probably no one.

Even if you mentioned it to an individual that attended the debacle do you know what they’d most likely say? Nothing. They would just give you a confused look like they have no idea what you are talking about.

But fear is a pervasive jerk that is bound to show up again and again. It can ruin a future opportunity and also your dreams.

Often, because we don’t succeed or get hurt, we refuse to put ourselves out there again. You wrote a story and no one liked it. What if that happened again? True you might be devastated, but do you know who’s keeping score of every time you fail?

You are.

Ever heard of Thomas Edison? He failed hundreds of times trying to make a light bulb.

Photo Credit: SkydiveAndes via Compfight cc
Photo Credit: SkydiveAndes via Compfight cc

The difference with Edison is that he viewed the task he wanted to complete as a puzzle. He tried to solve it and if it didn’t work he’d try another piece, another method, another direction.

Life is not easy or perfect, so why would we ever believe a novel or starting a business would be a breeze? You’ll launch a business that will have bad days. You’ll start a blog that will not get any traffic. You’ll start a book that will be terrible in the end.

This can lead to a sad place. Where we draw a line in the sand between us and our dreams.

We give our dreams an ultimatum.

I’ll keep blogging if I get one new follower today.

I’ll keep practicing if I get a call this week for another audition.

I’ll try the guitar one more time, but then that’s it.

The key to eradicate the fear of failure is persistence and perspective.

What happens if persevere? If we throw away our fears of failing and go and see what’s on the other side of the hill?

J.K. Rowling kept at it.

Thomas Edison did too.

How about you?

Writing with Passion and Persistence

This is a short piece from YouTube about the late great Ray Bradbury. He talks about his passion for writing, how he wrote a short story a week, and slowly became a published author.

He discusses the turning point in his career – a short story titled The Lake which is based on a true story. At the end of the piece he says it took him ten years to write something beautiful. I realize now, at times, how impatient we are with our inner authors and how passion and persistence pays off.

Rest in peace Mr. Bradbury and thank you.

Cheers,

Bob